McGinn is look­ing for a pizza the ac­tion as a Dons coach

● Winger has new restau­rant and hunger for fu­ture in game

The Press and Journal (Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire) - - SPORT - BY PAUL THIRD

Niall McGinn is mak­ing plans for life af­ter foot­ball by in­vest­ing in a new pizza restau­rant in Belfast – but what he re­ally cov­ets is a slice of the coach­ing ac­tion at Pit­to­drie.

The North­ern Ire­land in­ter­na­tional winger this week an­nounced a new ven­ture, Pizza On The Square, will open in Belfast city-cen­tre next month, al­most 10 years af­ter he and his agent Gerry Carlile opened their first restau­rant to­gether.

McGinn, 32, is ex­cited by the new in­vest­ment, the third restau­rant ven­ture be­tween the duo, but he has no de­signs on quit­ting the game when the time comes to stop play­ing. If any­thing, he hopes to con­tinue in foot­ball as a coach and would wel­come the chance to take on new re­spon­si­bil­i­ties at Pit­to­drie.

He said: “It’s just an­other wee ad­ven­ture out­side of foot­ball with my agent, as we al­ready have one go­ing strong in West Belfast and this new one is in the city cen­tre.

“Hope­fully it takes off and does well but I started my coach­ing badges last sum­mer so I’m just look­ing to fin­ish off my B li­cence then move on to the A one.

“You do start look­ing at what you can do when you stop play­ing but it’s my am­bi­tion to stay in the game when that time comes.

“If I can get my badges while play­ing for a club like Aberdeen then hope­fully that can maybe open a few doors for me when my con­tract ends here.”

McGinn has worked with sev­eral man­agers dur­ing his ca­reer and he be­lieves he has learned much in his ca­reer from the coaches he has served un­der.

He said: “Look­ing at my char­ac­ter, I would prob­a­bly be more of a level-headed guy that would suit man­age­ment more than coach­ing I would say.

“I’ve been lucky to work un­der some re­ally good ones that I’ve learned from, like Michael O’Neill, Derek McInnes and Neil Len­non, as well as a short time un­der Tony Mow­bray.

“Ob­vi­ously there have been dif­fer­ent char­ac­ters, as you get the fiery ones like Lenny and the calmer ones like Derek and Michael, who has done well at in­ter­na­tional level.

“If I can take the best at­tributes of all of them and put it all to­gether then I wouldn’t be too bad as a man­ager.

“I’d be more chilled and laid-back but do the shout­ing at the right times rather than be­ing feisty.”

For now coach­ing, and pizza, for that mat­ter, can wait, how­ever. Play­ing du­ties re­main

MEN­TOR: McGinn says he would take lessons from the bosses he has worked un­der, such as Derek McInnes

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